REFILE-FOREX-Yen dips after G7 statement, euro uptrend resumes

Tue Feb 12, 2013 6:51am EST

Related Topics

* G7 statement on currencies, cools currency war talk

* Reaffirms commitment to market-determined exchange rates

* Yen pares gains after statement, yen weakness resumes

* Euro rebounds against dollar and yen

By Anooja Debnath

LONDON, Feb 12 (Reuters) - The yen fell on Tuesday, giving up earlier gains against the euro and dollar, after investors took a statement by the Group of Seven countries as an acceptance of further weakness in the Japanese currency.

The G7 said it remained committed to market-determined exchange rates while agreeing that disorderly exchange rate movements and excess volatility can harm economic and financial stability.

Strategists said the Japanese currency's weakness, driven by the new Japanese government's pressing for aggressive easing of monetary policy, would persist and investors would buy the dollar and the euro on dips against the yen, making any rebound in the yen short-lived.

The G7 statement was also seen as pre-empting any criticism of Japan at a meeting of G20 finance chiefs later in the week.

"The statement indicates that there will be little attempt to single out Japan as a currency manipulator at the G20 meeting as long as the Japanese policies deal with domestic issues like deflation and are not targeting the yen," said Valentin Marinov, head of European G10 FX strategy at Citi.

"Presumably that will encourage investors to continue doing what they are doing, that is - sell yen across the board."

The dollar was flat on the day at 94.30 yen, not far from 94.465 yen, its highest since May 2010, which it hit on Monday. Strong resistance, as well as options positions and stop-loss orders, were said to lie at 94.50 yen.

The euro rose about 0.3 percent to 126.80 yen, approaching Feb. 6's near three-year high of 127.71 yen.

The euro jumped to a session high of 1.2356 francs on trading platform EBS after Swiss National Bank chief Thomas Jordan said the franc cap would remain in place and that he expected the currency to ease against the euro.

"What stands out is that it seems as if Japan and to some extent Switzerland could still get away with the current policy mix by arguing that they are pursuing domestic policies and that currency weakness is just the side product of this," Citi's Marinov said.

Comments by U.S. Treasury Under-secretary for International Affairs Lael Brainard on Monday that the United States supports Japanese efforts to end deflation, were also interpreted by markets as an acceptance of a weak yen..

She stressed that the G20 needed to deliver on a commitment to move to market-determined exchange rates and refrain from competitive devaluation.

The Bank of Japan holds its regular meeting on Wednesday and Thursday, and is expected to keep policy steady.

EURO RECOVERY

The euro rose against the yen and the dollar after the G7 statement. The single currency was up 0.4 percent on the day at $1.3455, breaking through option barriers at $1.3450.

Strategists said most speculators would keep buying the euro on dips, with stop-loss sell orders below $1.3340. The euro fall helped the dollar index to a one-month high of 80.484.

Concerns about the terms of a bailout for Cyprus, which will be high on the agenda at a meeting of European Union finance ministers, could limit the euro's gains, analysts said.

Worries about a Spanish political scandal and nervousness in Italy in the run-up to the Feb. 24-25 election have also weighed on the euro of late.

"The euro sell-off (earlier) was quite modest," said Arne Lohmann Rasmussen, head of FX research at Danske Bank, adding the euro's general rising trend was probably intact.

"We recommend our clients buy the euro on these dips as we think the euro recovery will continue," Rasmussen said, adding the ECB would not revert to unconventional measures and that its monetary policy would be out of sync with other major central banks which would continue to pump in stimulus.

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